Late Night Hosts James Corden, Stephen Colbert Give Heartfelt Prince Tributes

by Rachel McRady 12:03 AM PDT, April 22, 2016
Photo: CBS

Remembering a legend! On Thursday night, late night hosts James Corden and Stephen Colbert took a moment to honor the late Prince. After the news broke of the artist’s passing, Corden re-recorded the intro to The Late Late Show to highlight the life of one of his favorite musicians.

“It didn't feel right to me to start an entertainment show without coming back down here and turning the lights on and saying something about it before we begin,” Corden said. “I don't even know where to start when I talk about Prince as an artist, because to be unique in this world is impossible. Like almost all art is taken or borrowed from somewhere else, yet an artist like Prince stands alone. He is completely original.”

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The “Carpool Karaoke” star noted that he saw Prince in concert numerous times, both attending big shows in sold-out arenas and smaller venues. He remembered rushing to see him after the singer announced from the stage where he’d be performing afterwards.

“I'm going to miss not being able to hear his new music, and I'm going to miss not being able to see him live again,” Corden said. “But I will always cherish the fact that I got to be in his audience, just to be in his orbit for those few nights. What a thing to have been alive when Prince was making music.”

The Brit got sentimental, concluding, “Sometimes I wish life was never-ending and all good things they say never last.”

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Similarly, The Late Show host Colbert talked about the first time he listened to a Prince record as a high school choir student, calling the music “so powerful” and quipping that he and his peers had to wear headphones so his teachers didn’t hear the lyrics.

Colbert also noted that his band leader, Jean-Baptiste, actually worked with the trailblazing artist.

“He had a huge aura. His energy and presence in a room just kind of filled everybody's hearts,” Baptiste said. “He had a certain kind of way of being aware of what was going on.”

In a special tribute, Colbert turned his set purple, saying, “Besides being a beautiful artist, not many people are as influential enough to be known by one name, let alone by one color. So in a small gesture of respect tonight, we'd like to change the set in his honor.”

Prince was found dead at his Paisley Park Studios residence in Minnesota on Thursday morning. He was 57 at the time of his death.